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Encyclopedia > Early Congolese history
History of DR Congo
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Early Congolese History starts with waves of Bantu migrations from 2000 BC to 500 AD moving into the area now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They came from the northwest, adding to and displacing the indigenous Pygmy populations into the southern regions of the modern Congo state. The Bantus imported agriculture and iron-working techniques from West Africa into the area, as well as establishing the Bantu language family as the primary set of tongues for the Congolese. The area now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo was populated as early as 10,000 years ago and settled in the 7th and 8th centuries A.D. by Bantus from present-day Nigeria. ... Image File history File links DRC_History_Logo. ... Colonisation of the Congo refers to the period from Henry Morton Stanleys first exploration of the Congo (1867) until its annexation as a personal possession of King Léopold II of Belgium (1885). ... The Congo Free State was a kingdom privately and controversially owned by King Leopold II of Belgium that included the entire area now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo. ... The Belgian Congo was the formal title of present-day Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) between King Léopold IIs formal relinquishment of personal control over the state to Belgium on 15 November, 1908, to the dawn of Congolese independence on 30 June, 1960. ... (You may be looking for the First Congo War, 1996-7, or the Second Congo War, 1998-2002) The Congo Crisis (1960-1965) was a period of turmoil in the First Republic of the Congo that began with national independence from Belgium and ended with the seizing of power by... This article deals with the former name of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. ... The First Congo War was a conflict from late 1996 to 1997 in which Zairean President Mobutu Sésé Seko was eaten by rebel forces backed by foreign powers such as Uganda and Rwanda. ... The Second Congo War was a conflict that took place largely in the territory of Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire). ... Transitional Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Stub: In 2001 President Luarent Kabila was assasinated and his son Joseph Kabila was named head of state. ... Map showing the approximate distribution of Bantu (dull yellow) vs. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...  Western Africa (UN subregion)  Maghreb West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of the African continent. ...


Subsequent migrations from the Darfur and Kordofan regions of Sudan into the north of Congo, as well as East Africans migrating into the eastern Congo, added to the mix of ethnic groups. Darfur (Arabic دار فور, meaning home of the Fur) is a region of far western Sudan, bordering the Central African Republic, Libya, and Chad. ... Kordofan is a former province of central Sudan. ... Categories: Africa geography stubs | Eastern Africa ...

Contents


Early History

Expansion of the Bantu

Starting at the beginning of the fifth century, waves of Bantu began settling in the extreme northwest of Central Africa and then gradually started to expand southward. (4th century - 5th century - 6th century - other centuries) Events Rome sacked by Visigoths in 410. ... Map showing the approximate distribution of Bantu (dull yellow) vs. ...


Their propagation was accelerated by the transition from Stone-Age to Iron-Age techniques (unlike other areas of the world, iron technology did not begin to develop in Central Africa until much later). The peoples living in the south and southwest were mostly Pygmies and hunter-gatherer groups, whose technology involved only minimal use of metal technologies. The development of metal tools during this time period revolutionized agriculture and animal husbandry. This led to the displacement of the hunter-gatherer groups in the east and southeast. Obsidian arrowhead The Stone Age is a broad prehistoric time period during which humans widely used stone for toolmaking. ... In archaeology, the Iron Age is the stage in the development of any people where the use of iron implements as tools and weapons is prominent. ... In a draw in a mountainous region, a shepherd guides a flock of about 20 sheep amidst scrub and olive trees. ... In anthropology, the hunter-gatherer way of life is that led by certain societies of the Neolithic Era based on the exploitation of wild plants and animals. ...


The tenth century marked the final expansion of the Bantu in West-Central Africa. Rising population soon made intricate local, regional and foreign commercial nets possible, forming networks that traded mostly in salt, iron and copper. ( 9th century - 10th century - 11th century - other centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 10th century was that century which lasted from 901 to 1000. ... A magnified crystal of a salt (halite/sodium chloride) In chemistry, a salt is any ionic compound composed of positively charged cations and negatively charged anions, so that the product is neutral and without a net charge. ... General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 8, 4, d Appearance lustrous metallic with a grayish tinge Atomic mass 55. ... General Name, Symbol, Number copper, Cu, 29 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 11, 4, d Appearance metallic brown Atomic mass 63. ...


The Upemba and Luba cultures

In the fifth century, a society began to develop in a region that initially encompassed only a 200 km area along the banks of the Lualaba River in the modern day Katanga province. This culture, known as the Upemba, would eventually evolve into the more significant Luba kingdom. The Lualaba is the headstream of the Congo River, running from the vicinity of Lubumbashi north to Kisangani, where the Congo officially begins. ... Capital Lubumbashi Created June 1960 Dissolved January 1963 Demonym Katangan Currency Katanga franc Katanga is the southern province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, regional capital Lubumbashi (formerly Elizabethville). ... Luba may refer to: Luba, Equatorial Guinea Luba, a tribe in western Africa Tshiluba language Luba, a comic book character This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ...


The process in which the primitive original Upemba society transitioned into the Luba kingdom was gradual and complex. This transition ran without interruption, with several distinct societies developing out of the Upemba culture prior to the genesis of the Luba. Each of these societies based the foundation of their society on that of the one which preceded it (much in the way that many aspects of Roman culture were borrowed from the Greeks). The fifth century saw this societal evolution develop in the area around present day Kamilamba at the Kabambasee, which was followed and replaced by a number of other cultures which were based around the cities of Sanga and Katango. The Roman Forum was the central area around which ancient Rome developed. ... Sanga or Sangha is a town in the Dogon Country region of Mali, lying east of Bandiagara at the top of an escarpment. ...


The region in which these cultures appeared is particularly rich in ores and the civilization began to develop and implement iron and copper technology, in addition to trading in ivory and other goods. The Upemba established a strong commercial demand for their metal technologies and were able to institute a primitive but long-range commercial net (the business connections extended over 1500 km, all the way to the Indian Ocean). Additionally, the region was endowed with favorable agricultural conditions and a wealth of fish and game. An ore is a mineral deposit containing a metal or other valuable resource in economically viable concentrations. ... General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 8, 4, d Appearance lustrous metallic with a grayish tinge Atomic mass 55. ... General Name, Symbol, Number copper, Cu, 29 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 11, 4, d Appearance metallic brown Atomic mass 63. ... An elaborately carved ivory decoration Ivory is a hard, white, opaque substance that is the bulk of the teeth and tusks of animals such as the elephant, hippopotamus, walrus, mammoth, narwhal, etc. ... Atlantic herring, Clupea harengus: the most abundant species of fish in the world. ...


Its strong economy and food-base allowed the region to become extremely wealthy. So wealthy, in fact, that cities and centralized government based on a chieftain system developed. The political institution of the chieftain became generally accepted and these rulers became increasingly powerful, especially at the end the of the 1500s. This article is about the leader. ...


The Eve of Colonial Rule

The Kuba Federation

The Kuba Kingdom, or more accurately, the Kuba Federation, was a political entity (one comprising a collection of approximately twenty Bantu ethnic groups) that began to develop out of a number of decentralized, ethnically Bantu states (namely the Luba, the Leele, and the Wongo ethnic groups).


The federation’s capital was Nsheng, which is now modern Mushenge. The name “Kuba” is derived from the term used by the Luba (whose kingdom lay to the south of the Kuba) for the civilization.


Because of its relative remoteness in the southern Congo, Kuba was largely spared the turmoil of both European and Arab slave trades. As a result,the civilization was able to maintain itself until the 19th century. Also due mainly to its location, even after Belgium officially established the Congo Free State in 1875, the Kuba were able to sustain their federation, which comprised some 100,000 square kilometers and had a population of approximately 150,000 inhabitants. This article is about the continent. ... The Arabs (Arabic: عرب Ê»arab) are a large and heterogeneous ethnic group found throughout the Middle East and North Africa, originating in the Arabian Peninsula of southwest Asia. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Congo Free State was a kingdom privately and controversially owned by King Leopold II of Belgium that included the entire area now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo. ...


The Belgians began attempting to gain the acceptance of the Kuba in the early 1880s; however, the gifts Belgium attempted to give were always rejected and king aMbweeky aMileng threatened to behead any foreign intruders. As a result of their justifiable fear of white foreigners, it was not until the African-American missionary William Sheppard made contact with the Kuba that a foreigner would gain their acceptance. This was mainly due to his African blood and Sheppard was able to live amongst the Kuba for four months. An African American (also Afro-American, Black American, American-African) is a member of an ethnic group in the United States whose ancestors, usually in predominant part, were indigenous to Africa. ... Reverend William Henry Sheppard (1865 - 1927) was one of the earliest African-Americans to become a missionary for the Presbyterian Church. ...


Eventually, after colonial officials were able to enforce their authority upon the Kuba near the end of the 1800s, the entire region became increasingly unstable. However, the well-organized Kuba fought relentlessly against the regime and the area was one of the main sectors of resistance to Belgium throughout its rule.


The Kongo Empire

The dominant political force of the Congo region prior to and during the initial arrival of Europeans was the Kongo Empire. The Kongo was a highly developed state located primarily in the southwest portion of the modern Congo, and also occupying portions of northern Angola and Cabinda. At its greatest extent, the empire reached from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Kwango River in the east, and from the Congo River in the north to the Loje River in the south. This article is about the continent. ... The Empire Kongo The Kongo Kingdom was an African kingdom located in southwest Africa in what are now northern Angola, Cabinda, Republic of the Congo, and the western portion of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. ... Map of Angola, highlighting Cabinda Cabinda is a small territory, administered as an exclave of Angola, resulting from the fusion of three kingdoms: NGoyo, Loango and Kacongo. ... The Congo is the largest river in Western Central Africa. ...


The kingdom was headed by a king known as the Manikongo, who exercised his authority over the six provinces that constituted the Kongo kingdom and the Bakongo (Kongo peoples). When the Kongo Kingdom was at its political apex in the 15th and 16th centuries, the King, who had to be a male descendant of Wene, reigned supreme. He was elected by a group of governors, usually the heads of important families and occasionally including Portuguese officials. The activities of the court were supported by an extensive system of civil servants, and the court itself usually consisted of numerous male relatives of the King. The villages were often governed by lesser relatives of the King who were responsible to him. All members of government were invested with their power under the auspices of a ritual specialist.The Manikongo personally appointed a kind of governor for each of the six provinces to oversee each from his capital, Mbanza-Kongo. The city is now known by the same name as the capital of an Angolan province, but was for a time renamed by the Manikongo to 'Sao Salvador' in an effort to adopt Portuguese culture. The Manikongo was the title of the ruler of the 14th century - 17th century Kingdom of Kongo, a large area consisting of land in present-day Democratic Republic of Congo and Angola, who ruled from the kingdoms capital Mbanza-Kongo, present day capital city of the Angolan province of... Province is a name for a secondary, or subnational entity of government in most countries. ... The Bakongo people (aka. ... A court is an official, public forum which a sovereign establishes by lawful authority to adjudicate disputes, and to dispense civil, labour, administrative and criminal justice under the law. ... Mbanza Kongo, formerly known as São Salvador, is the capital of Zaire province in Northwestern Angola, close to the DOC Border. ...


In its prime, the Kingdom exacted taxes, forced labor, and collected fines from its citizens in order to prosper. At times, enslaved peoples, ivory, and copper were traded to the Europeans on the coast. The important harbors were Sonyo and Pinda. In addition to the six provinces, the Kongo kingdom also established a sphere of influence in a number of outlying areas from which it was able to extract tribute. The kingdom was also at the center of an extensive Central African trade network in which it traded and produced large quantities of ivory, as well as manufacturing copperware, raffia cloth, and pottery, along with other natural resources (The eastern region of the Congo [such as the province of Katanga] is particularly rich in mineral resources, especially diamonds). These trade goods would also form, in addition to slaves, the backbone of the Kongo's trade with Europeans(primarily the Portuguese), upon their arrival. A sphere of influence is a metaphorical region of political influences surrounding a country or a region of economic influence around an urban area. ... A tribute (from Latin tribulum, contribution) is wealth one party gives to another as a sign of respect or, as was often case in historical contests, of submission or allegiance. ... An elaborately carved ivory decoration Ivory is a hard, white, opaque substance that is the bulk of the teeth and tusks of animals such as the elephant, hippopotamus, walrus, mammoth, narwhal, etc. ... Capital Lubumbashi Created June 1960 Dissolved January 1963 Demonym Katangan Currency Katanga franc Katanga is the southern province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, regional capital Lubumbashi (formerly Elizabethville). ... This article is about minerals in the geologic sense; for nutrient minerals see dietary mineral; for the band see Mineral (band). ... For other uses, see Diamond (disambiguation). ... The Buxton Memorial Fountain, celebrating the emancipation of slaves in the British Empire in 1834, London. ...


The aforementioned slave trade was to be a significant factor in bringing about the end of the Kongo Empire, as the elites of the empire allowed European slave traders to eliminate a significant percentage of the population. The slave trade is almost as old as civilisation itself. ...


When King Álvaro I, came to the throne in an environment of contestation in 1568, he immediately had to fight invaders from the east (who some authorities believe were actually rebels within the country, either peasants or discontented nobles) called the "Jagas". To do this, he had to enlist the aid of the Portuguese based at São Tomé, who sent an expedition under Francisco de Gouveia Sottomaior to assist. At the same time, however, Álvaro had to allow the Portuguese to establish a colony in his province of Luanda in the south of his country. Kongo provided the Portuguese with support in their war against the Kingdom of Ndongo, located in the interior east of Luanda, when Portugual went to war with it in 1579. Eventually the Portuguese would gain control over most of the surrounding territory which led to increasing tensions with the Kongo. The Ndongo are a Bantu-speaking people inhabiting northern Angola. ... Map of Angola Luanda (formerly called Loanda) is the largest city and capital of Angola. ... Events January 6 - The Union of Atrecht united the southern Netherlands under the Duke of Parma, governor in the name of king Philip II of Spain. ...


At the Battle of Ambuila in 1665, the Portuguese forces from Angola defeated the forces of king Antonio I of Kongo; Antonio was killed with many of his courtiers and the Luso-African author Manuel Roboredo, who had attempted to prevent this final war. Nevertheless, the country continued to exist, at least in name, for over two centuries, until the realm was divided among Portugal, Belgium, and France at the Conference of Berlin in 1884-1885. At the Battle of Mbwila (or Battle of Ambuila) on October 29, 1665, Portuguese forces defeated the forces of the Kingdom of Kongo and decapitated king Antonio I of Kongo, also called Vita Nkanga, ending native rule of that kingdom. ... Events March 4 - Start of the Second Anglo-Dutch War. ... For the Cold War conference see Berlin Conference of 1954. ... 1884 (MDCCCLXXXIV) is a leap year starting on Tuesday (click on link to calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a leap year starting on Thursday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... 1885 (MDCCCLXXXV) is a common year starting on Thursday. ...


Other States

The Kongo and the Kuba were certainly the largest political entities in the pre-colonial Congo area; however, there were numerous other, much smaller states scattered throughout the territory in the north and northeast, with Pygmies and other primarily hunter-gatherer populations located mostly in the southern portions of the region. Generally speaking, pygmy (from Greek pygmaios, fist sized, a kind of dwarf in Greek mythology) can refer to any human or animal of unusually small size, for example, the pygmy hippopotamus. ... In anthropology, the hunter-gatherer way of life is that led by certain societies of the Neolithic Era based on the exploitation of wild plants and animals. ...


Of particular note is that the populations of the Eastern regions of the primordial Congo were heavily disrupted by constant slaving, mainly from Zanzibari slave dealers such as the infamous Tippu Tip (though he would come after the Europeans' entrance onto the scene). The slave trade in this portion of Africa was primarily Arab in nature (in contrast to the European or Atlantic Slave Trade, which took place primarily in West Africa, the Arab Slave Trade was located on the eastern coast of the continent), with captured persons being shipped off to the Middle East or to holdings of Arabian kingdoms for labor. Map of Zanzibars main island Zanzibar, Tanzania, comprises a pair of islands off the east coast of Africa called Zanzibar (Unguja) (1994 est. ... Categories: People stubs | 1837 births | 1905 deaths ... The Arabs (Arabic: عرب ʻarab) are a large and heterogeneous ethnic group found throughout the Middle East and North Africa, originating in the Arabian Peninsula of southwest Asia. ... The Atlantic slave trade was the purchase and transport of black Africans into bondage and servitude in the New World. ... A map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East The Middle East is a region comprising the lands around the southern and eastern parts of the Mediterranean Sea, a territory that extends from the eastern Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf. ... The Arabian Peninsula The Arabian Peninsula is a peninsula in Southwest Asia at the junction of Africa and Asia consisting mainly of desert. ...


The Effects of Geography and Climate

Additionally, it must be mentioned that, as is this case today, the Congo River and its tributaries, as well as climactic conditions in general, play a monstrous roll in shaping the lives of the inhabitants of the Congo. The rivers are and were tremendously important to regional trade and provide a vast natural network for such activities, in addition to providing a source of food and water (which is needless to say, abundant) to the population. The Congo is the largest river in Western Central Africa. ... Map of the climates of the Earth The image above is proposed for deletion. ... For the Second World War frigate class, see River class frigate The Murray River in Australia A waterfall on the Ova da Fedoz, Switzerland A river is a large natural waterway. ...


It must also be mentioned that the climate is a major force in the Congo, which is made up primarily of tropical rainforest that sees some of the highest annual rainfall in the world. This high amount of rainfall makes it difficult to sustain agriculture, and subsequently a large population because the soil is simply too watered-down and prone to periodic floods (which can ruin crops, of course) to produce large quantities of food. For this reason, the population of the Congo has maintained a low population in addition to an extremely low population density. Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests, also known as tropical rain forests, are a tropical and subtropical biome. ... In meteorology, precipitation is any kind of water that falls from the sky as part of the weather. ... Soil is material capable of supporting plant life. ...


Also, much has been made about the large number of "primitive" hunter-gatherer groups that inhabit the Congo, especially the Pygmy population. However, the reason for this particular life-style being so prominent in the Congo is geographical and climactic: the area is simply not capable of producing a large amount of food from agriculture, and as a result, a portion of the population has continued to hunt and gather because it is a much more sustainable way of life. Map of the Earth ( Medium) ( Large 2 MB) Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Geography Geography is the description of the surface of the Earth, its life and culture. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Talk:Democratic Republic of the Congo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2418 words)
The history of the Congo shouldn't be build around the occupation/administration of the country by Europeans.
In fact, when I came up with the title Precolonial Congo for the History of the DRC series, I was concerned about the implications of the title (see [1]).
the fact of the matter is the area's history is split between two periods with a sharp dividing line: pre-colonial and post-colonial.
Early Congolese History - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1793 words)
Early Congolese History starts with waves of Bantu migrations from 2000 BC to 500 AD moving into the area now known as the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The Belgians began attempting to gain the acceptance of the Kuba in the early 1880s; however, the gifts Belgium attempted to give were always rejected and king aMbweeky aMileng threatened to behead any foreign intruders.
As a result of their justifiable fear of white foreigners, it was not until the African-American missionary William Sheppard made contact with the Kuba that a foreigner would gain their acceptance.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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